Who and What is Dodoland? (Dodo Land)
In 1977 the Award Winning large format book called
"Journey to Dodo Land" (Dodoland)
was published by Bird Helmet Productions
in Los Angles. Thanks to Doug Riseborough appreciation
and Dr. Richard Mazurek's vision for the future. (
Other Angels are listed on the web-site) The outstanding
large format colorful book won a Printers Institute
of America Award in 1978. Della Burford, author
and illustrator, created this land where "you can
be what you want to be". Dale Bertrand's photographs
were published to create the Giant Flower Island.
In Dodoland you will find a Sea of Love,
A Dragon Ship, Land of Fire,
Night Bubble, Island of Eyes
and a Giant Flower Island.
The Bird Helmet
The Bird Helmet is a symbol of creativity
and the children color it the colors they love best
to fly to Dodo Land. Her story themes are imagination and helping the environment. She has been inspired by travel such as her trip to India and also her dreams which she has record in Dream Wheels for thirty years.
In 1978 former Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau
wrote to Della from Ottawa stating, " My three sons are
delighted with your story which ,I am sure, they will want
to hear very often. . " In quoting from Ellen
Rothstein from Bookmark ( Magazine
for Teachers/Librarians in British Columbia), September,
2001- " the Dodo bird once lived on the Earth but,
because people laughed and teased him, he decided to move
to the place called Dodoland ( Dodo Land ). He became the
"Elemental Dodo"- part bird, part fish, part camel and part
dragon and taught anyone who came to Dodo Land (Dodoland)
to become " whatever you want to be". - "The theme for this
issue's Bookmark is "The Eye of the Beholder,", focusing
on the integration and importance of arts in education.
The works of author-illustrator Della Burford are the epitome
of that integration. "
The Elemental Dodo.
In the winter of 1978 Tedrian Chizik of
New York, a dance and movement specialist began to
perform as the Elemental Dodo. He directed and produced
Journey to Dodoland - Dodo Land ( Dodoland). Della
Burford was co-director and assisting were Dale
Bertrand and Merian Soto who
performed as the Dancing Flamingo. Julie Lieberman
as Cooey and Musical Director. She Directed,
played the violin and sang. Jerry Shrair
was the first Musical Director and added so much including
the Dodoland Song you can hear on the Video Streaming
of Dodoland on the front page of www.dodoland.com.
and Larry Karush also was a musical
director of Secrets of the Rainbow when there was a show at the
Third Street Music School. Thanks to all of you -
you all made Dodoland a fantastic experience for all
the children who watched it.. One of the main aims
was integrating music, movement, art, drama and creating
a participatory production.
One of the first participatory performances
of "Journey to Dodoland" was at " The Museum of Natural
History" in New York in 1980. One of two places in the
world that has a stuffed dodo bird. The show on the poster
stated "Journey to Dodoland, On Our Way to Puerto Rico"
- A musical drama based on the original story "Journey to
Dodoland' by Della Burford with participation by the children
in the audience. In the summer of 1980 a benefit performance
was given at the Cuban Refugee Camps in Pennsylvania
sponsored by the Red Cross. The Project "Opportunidad"
took the performance in 1982 to East Harlem in
New York with sponsorship from the City of New York. Dodoland
was performed twice to the schools in East Harlem and Magical
Earth also went to these schools. Dodoland performed
It also performed at many hospitals including
the Sloan Kettering Hospital and Metropolitan
Hospital in New York. Carlos Loran from the Hospital
wrote, "Your show did more than bring smiles of joy
and laughter to the faces of the many youngster present.
It actually made them forget , if only for a short while,
about their handicaps and illnesses."
Della, Dale, Merian , Tedrian, and Alice took Dodoland to all the Schools for the Hearing Impaired in Ontario and Dodoland was translated into sign language. Della also lead a project for prisoners at the Metro Toronto Detention Centre .
In the years that Dodoland performed in New
York it was adapted for a performance for many different
events, building and festivals. It performed at the Native
American Indian Community Centre, for the Children's
festival in Remini, Italy and through the sponsorship
of the Organization of American States taken to the "Magic
in Me" Conference in Gautemala in 1983, where 300 teachers
from Central and South America attended Dodoland along with
many handicapped children in various hospitals. There
was a grand finale with DODOLAND and Disney World Characters
at the National Theatre. Every special event was attended
by handicapped and disabled children. In New York City Dodoland
performed at the 3rd Street Music School, Museo Del Barrio, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Lincoln
Center Library, Staten Island Childrens Museum,
and St Peter's Church adjacent to Citycorp on 54th
and Lexington for the United Nations International School
and other children. The school wrote, "Your fantastic
imagination took them to a make believe world, thus providing
them with a most unusual and enriching experience."
Dodoland went to Washington and was performed
at the Smithsonian Institute in the Discovery Theatre
and at the Pavilion of the old Post Office. On
the poster from the show it describes Dodo Land as being
"In the tradition of children's stories like the Wizard
of Oz" and "Alice in Wonderland", this is a festival of
imagination, music and audience participation."
Over a seven year period Dodo Land was performed by Imaginations
Unlimited for over 100,000 children internationally.
Imaginations Unlimited in New York told "Journey
to Dodoland" as a storytelling at the" WNYC Storytelling
Festival in Central Park. Over many years"Journey to
Dodo Land" (Dodoland) was done as a storytelling by Della
in hundreds of schools including being taken to native
children at the Wandering Spirit Survival School,
handicapped children at Sunnyview School. Della was Director of the children's
part of the Cape Cod Writer's Conference and Eleanor
Titus states in a article called "Storyteller
takes students on sojourn over the rainbow" -for
the the Cape Cod Times, "Della Burford, known as the
"Bird Lady of the Rainbow" shows children how to get there.
..she gently lifts each child into his or her own imaginary
Visits are still being done today and can be arranged
|When Della Burford and Dale Bertrand's book "Magical Earth
Secrets" was published in 1990 by the Western
Canada Wilderness Committee it added an emphasis
of environmental awareness to their workshops.
It is the story of an Eagle Child who loses its power
because of pollution and the secrets it learns to
love and care for the earth. The book became a bestseller
in Canada. David Suzuki in the foreword of
the book states, " Children of the world need hope
not despair,this book and your postive actions provide
it." Pippa Wysong in an article with the
Toronto Star states, " The book is indeed
about the environment, but presented in a style that
is lyrical and typical of the traditional storyteller."
"The Environmental Activity Guide",
a teacher's guide, has 54 activites for children to express
their feelings about protecting the earth. This guide was
bought by the Metro Toronto Separate School Board to be
used in over 200 schools, and Della has instructed hundreds
of libarians and teachers on how to effectively use the
activites to teach the environment. Della did many Canada Trust
Friends of the Environment
projects around the guide and picture book.
'Magical Earth Secret" was performed for
two years in New York by Imaginations Unlimited
before being published as a book. It has subsequently
been performed in Sweden by children at
the wonderful Globetree event in the Concert
Hall in Stockholm and at the Centennial
library in Edmonton, Alberta by the Maria Formolo
Dance Company at the
Celebration of the Environment and by various schools as school performances
and Environmental Festivals.
|Dodoland was represented at WOFIC the World Festival
of Island Cultures in May/
June 2001 in Jeju Island, Korea in the Asian
and American/European Pavilion. The story was told
in English by Della and translated in Korean with
Many schools across Canada have performed Magical Earth
Secret as a school play. Magical Earth Secret, with Storytellings
and Performances has been performed for 100,000
Many Educational Workshops have been presented
over the last 20 years. From 1977 to 2010 Della and Dale
have led Workshops in 300 schools and libraries in Canada
and the United States. Storytellings have also been done in schools in England and Mexico.
In 2004 Della lead a workshop in Holland on "Creating
your own Healing Story". Dale and Della were also filming
for two short films in Wales, Cornwall, and Ireland. She
also did a storytelling of "Magical Earth Secrets'at
Sunshine Hills School in Delta to inspire the children
for their Science projects for the spring Science Fair. In
2005 she did a Storytelling for Earth Day at View Royal
in Victoria. In 2006-2010 years she worked with students at St. Georges school and various schools in Vancouver and Victoria.
In 1995 the Journey to Dodo Land story (Dodoland)
was chosen to be showcased in the Swiftsure project
in Victoria, British Columbia, underwritten by
the B.C and Federal goverment of Canada, using internet
technologies to showcase BC culture. Ivan Sinclair
, Dave Godfrey from Softwords and Della
Burford, and Dale Bertrand (authors
and illustrators) launched the cyberspace playground with
stories and interactive activity centre. "Journey
to Dodoland", "Magical Earth Secrets"and
the " Environmental Activity Guide" are
woven together to create this exciting web site. In Dodoland
there is a Night Bubble to showcase childrens art and writing
, a Giant Flower Island to learn about the environment,
an Island of Eyes to meet authors and illustrators, and
a Dragon Ship for stories, activities and word games. Ian
Miller of the Times Colonist Newspaper commented
, "Dodoland is a new stop on the internet, designed
to lure the kids into an interactive world of computers
Della, with the help of the Community Futures Development
Corporation of Central Kootenay developed "Dodo Land"
(Dodoland) further and her Storytelling Workshops. She participated
in special workshops in Business development. She learned
many Internet & Animation ideas with Sharron Swan
and got great counselling with Barb Williams. A wonderful
program - thanks to everyone including the Coordinator
Kay Ryan. During this time Della worked with Diana
Rhodes from the Seed of Life Peace Foundation
and together with Dodo Land (Dodoland) and the Earthchild
Environment Foundation collected Peace
Wishes that were published in two separate Peace
Scroll books. The foreword for the last book was done by the Dalai Lama. She also participated in a major Artist
Residence at Sundance School and showed the students and
her new Storytellers and Stone Journey Art at the
Community Arts Council Gallery. In 2002 Della storytold
at the International Children Festival
in Vancouver. She finished an "ArtSmart"
project at Immaculate Conception School in Vancouver in
April of 2003. In 2004 Della led a workshop in Holland
on ""Creating your own Healing Story"".
Dale and Della were filming in Wales, Cornwall, and Ireland.
Della also did a storytelling at Sunshine Hills School in Delta to
inspire the children for their Science projects for a Science
Fair. In 2003 Dodoland/Magical Earth was performed at the Festival for Children, South Coast Plaza at Newport Beach, California. In 2005 she did a Storytelling for EarthDay
at View Royal in Victoria arranged by Lynn Moorhouse
a principal she worked previously with Della at George Jay
and Sundance School. Della went to Korea
the summer of 2007 and 2009 to storytell
and help the children make their own books. This took place in the Dream Center
in Kyeongju and at Gapyeong. in In 2009,10 and 11 Della and Dale
were travelling to Mexico and Bali to
photograph, film, workshop and paint. In 2011 Della storytold at a
school in New York and workshopped "Make an
Angel for Japan" in Toronto. Dale and Della are always open to be part
of events that encourage creativity and healing.
Dodoland in Cyberspace is a "Safe
Place for Children". At its sixteenth year
it has had 16,000,000 hits/requests on
the internet by over one million unique visitors. It has
survived by "being a labor of love" by Della and Dale, who
have done all maintenance and with Chris Martin the web
design would of been impossible.Glen Burford has
helped give technical advice and assisted in various Image Shows
of the aspects of the project one with a slide show with
the Dodoland Song written by Jerry Shrair which comes
from our history file. Glen also helped with techical advice
Josh Ardnt helped in planning the new Dodoland web-site
and Chris Martin
joined us in doing the final web-design and all coding for
the web-site in 2008. Thank you everyone who has helped us and
please excuse me if I have forgotten anyone.
Dodo Land (Dodoland) has been chosen over the years to be hot linked from
over 1100 sites around the world. There are many
wonderful sites that have chosen Dodoland to be a link to
them from Canada, United States, Finland, Brazil, Spain,
France, Mexico, Holland, Australia, Japan, Korea, Italy,
Sweden, Malaysia, Taiwan, New Zealand, and England to
name just a few. Again thank you everyone.Dodoland always
has been and always will be for the children of the world.
The popularity of Dodoland grows and will continue
as children and parents search for a happy, meaningful
and safe place to be.